Well, I at least got three posts out this week even if my monthly webcomic review (of Skin Deep) was so delayed that it pushed back Death Sworn but considering how little I enjoyed DS that wasn't exactly the best motivation to finish that review anyway. I did really enjoy Yozakura Quartet: Hana no Uta so I hope that helped convince some people to check it out and I just launched my summer co-column series over on OASG with fellow writer Muse, Shoujo You Should Know. We talked about Wish for our first installment and it had a late-breaking update that apparently Wish was originally based on a JoJo's Bizarre Adventures doujinshi that CLAMP once did which was the most bizarre comment I never even expected. Sure I knew they had done doujinshi in the past but this was still totally out of left-field to me.
Speaking of SYSK, I've already gotten one of two comments along the lines of "why are you even focusing on older stuff again, hasn't everyone already done this?" and FUNNY YOU SHOULD MENTION THAT. I did actually put a lot of thought into this column (it's more my idea than Muse's) so here's all of my rational below the fold:
So, the manga-focused world, much like the anime and novel worlds, is very much focused on The Latest Thing which I don't honestly think is a problem. I enjoy following current stories because it gives you a chance to better connect with other fans in a way that you can't when the show it over, it reinforces that media a connection among people. And this is true both for the "tumblr" side of this (where you see a decent number of people talking about current in Japan, often unlicensed manga) and the "blog" side of this where people put out reviews of the latest published works, different stories same excitement. Not everybody is part of this "world" however (either tumblr or blogs), god knows I haven't had the budget to buy much in terms of manga for years so I get a lot of my stuff at the library and you know what I look for? I look for stuff I've heard of, like Basara or Kitchen Princess, series I wouldn't have picked up otherwise. And if someone goes to a bookstore and looks in the manga section, what are they trying to find? Stuff they've heard of and if they only hear people talking about the latest things then that cuts out a huge amount of stuff!
All of our series, with one exception, are currently licensed and people will agree that our exception is still really easy to find.
There is romance manga in here, currently popular, but plenty of other genres too (I'm sad that I don't have any adventure-fantasy or sci-fi shojo but without CMX or TokyoPop my options were limited there).
Some of OASG's high-performing posts are the ones like "The Very Unoffical Guide to Discovering Manga in 2015", stuff that does well with SEO terms, not necessarily just already-present readership (although these days we have quite a few people doing manga reviews so that audience has gotta be growing).
If I had to guess, I'd say a lot of manga readers skew younger (and no not just because of The Onion article) so most them won't already know these titles. This isn't a series to preach to the choir, it's to be a resource for old and new fans (like when I complain about people clearly having only one or two manga influences in their own comics, here's a whole list of others to know!).
So for experienced readers: this is not the series of posts for you, enjoy if you want but this was made for someone else.